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MA RCA - final project 2011
Published:
QR U?  (MA RCA - final project)

In only a few years the combination of the Internet’s social networks and digital cameras on mobile phones have changed the way we express our identities. Individual expression has been made significantly easier and the route to fame more accessible. It has also turned all of us into our own "paparazzis".

Reading through some articles and texts about the effect of technology on our society I found the word "tribal" to be a reoccuring term used to describe it.

To use a very analogue culture as a reference to describe the effect of high tech on our society I find very interesting and this led me to how beads have been used as a communication tool and to express individual identity in African culture and how we also use "beads" (pixels) in the digital culture as a communcation tool and to express our identities online.
 
QR U? explores the juxtaposition of self promotion and personal privacy in this new environment. Could traditional African beadcraft be used in it's original function of communicating identity but used with modern technology in contemporary context?
QR U? - dress
 
The digital media has made self promotion easier and the route to fame has become more accessible. We have become our own paparazzi's and media.

The "super-self-promotional-dress" is designed for a pop star, Kali in Steed Lord. (www.steedlord.com)
 
The dress allows her to use the promotional ability of the internet to the maximum, while appearing in public offline. The dress is composed of different QR codes that link to different promotional material online that can be viewed instantly on her fans mobile phones.
 
Some of the codes link to a custom made videos. When scanned with a QR reader on a mobile phone the mask on the front will link to this video
 
And another code, above her heart, will show this video.
Photo of Kali in the dress:
 
photo: Einar Mega Egilsson
styling: Svala Kali Bjorgvinsdottir
make-up: Sóley Ástudóttir
hair/assistant: Rebekka Jónsdóttir
 
QR U? - privacy glasses
 
The digital media threatens our sense of "privacy" and control over how we want other people to see us.
The glasses are on the boundaries of a mask and sunglasses, high-fashion and theatrical. They give an air of importance, like famous people in Venice would wear elaborate masks, or Hollywood stars wear big flashy sunglasses. When they are scanned you will be given the option to pay a set sum to a charity chosen by the celebrity. The glasses commodify the privacy of the celebrity to the benefit of the charity. Donate to the charity and the identity of the person will be revealed.
 
Supported by Swarovski.
Photography: Eugenia Walberg